Friday, January 8, 2010

How SWEDE it is!

Usually I do not write about any one player, but let me ask you a question:

Are you as completely fascinated with Patric Hornqvist as I am? Last year, he was something special, but THIS YEAR he has really come in to his own. This 23 year old Swede has slowly wormed his way in to my heart since the pre-season with his rough and tumble style, and I honestly didn't think that was possible. You see, there's this "thing" about goalies that has always gotten my attention. It started with Vokoun, has moved on to Rinne, along with Khabibulin, no real reason behind it, but maybe they are the "bad boys" of the sport, always willing to throw themselves in front of a frozen weapon.... don't know, but I digress, back to the article at hand. Patric Hornqvist has become one of my favorite players to watch.

As the Predator's LEADING GOAL SCORER.... That's right, Mr. Last Pick of the 2005 draft, has 16 goals, 10 assists and a PLUS 10 rating so far this season (even while taking penalties for his gritty style) While, on any other team he wouldn't be a stand out with those kinds of stats, he has more goals since December 14th than Patrick Kane of the Blackhawks. Yes, you read THAT right, more goals than Patrick Kane in that period. (as of 1.7.10)

He is a nuisance for goaltenders, defenders try to target him while failing miserably, and coaches are unsure of how to tame him. When Horny (his nickname, I swear) is on the ice, you can feel the energy level go up especially in the top line, maybe his youth has woken the older players from their hibernation? That feels like a rant that would be better saved for another time.....

Anyways, back to Praising Patric....

Every time he is in the paint, you feel as though he can score as long as the puck is sent his way.... When was the last time anyone was able to say that about a Predator player?

Recently, Horny was named to the Swedish Olympic roster, and according to the post-game interview on January 5th V.S. the Flames, he is completely honored to be a part of it. He will be among some of Hockey's elite, including Forsberg, the Sedin brothers, Lidstrom, Ohlund, and many others. If he plays in that tournament like he does in every game here in Nashville, then the defending champs will be hard to beat.

Watching the game from last night against the Hurricanes solidified my love for the Swede.... After all, how many players can get 6 minutes of penalties in the first period and end up with 2 goals? Reading his post-game interview from the Predator's website, the quote that stood out the most was about his style of play in the crease, he said: "Yeah, that is my role there and I’m not going to change it. I’m going to be in the front and I’m going to be hard to play against every night." I LOVE THAT!!! His passion for the game and his play are really starting to make a case for a Hornqvist personalized jersey, instead of a RINNE... didn't think THAT was possible!

All in all, this season has really started to shape up for the Predators, and Hornqvist is not the only one who has contributed to the recent wins, but he has been a HUGE factor for the team. Let's just hope that continues, which when watching him play, I can't imagine it not.....

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